Facebook is everywhere. Since 2015, its payment system has been too.
Facebook has attempted to solve a problem we’ve all experienced: Splitting drinks among colleagues after work or forgetting to pay your roommate after sharing an Uber back home.
Facebook Messenger now combines transferring money with its familiar messaging system for easy payments to friends and family in your network, but only if you live in the United States, the United Kingdom or France.
How do I request and send money through Facebook?
1. Create or sign into your Facebook account. You’ll need to be active with Facebook to access Facebook Messenger and begin sending money to your contacts.
2. Start your transfer. Create a new message and click the dollar sign at lower right. A smaller pop-up window will ask you to input the dollar amount you’re paying or requesting and what the payment is for. You can transfer money between other Facebook users only.
3. Add your debit card. Enter your debit card info and click Pay. Your money will be withdrawn and sent directly to your recipient’s debit account as soon as your bank approves the transaction.
What happens when someone sends or requests money from me?
1. You receive a message on Facebook. Notification of your request or payment will appear in Messenger just like any other message.
2. Accept or deny the payment request. If you accept the request, the amount will be withdrawn from your linked debit account. If you deny it, the person who requested the money will receive notification.
3. Accept or deny the payment. If you’ve received a payment, you can accept it for immediate deposit to your linked debit account. You can also deny the payment if you don’t recognize the sender or are otherwise wary.
Is Facebook’s payment system safe?
Because Facebook allows payment and receipt through debit card only, the Payment Card Security Industry Security Standards Council, which rates the safety of credit card transactions, does not give Facebook a security rating. However, Facebook’s payment system hasn’t suffered a single security breach since its launch in March 2015. To safeguard your money and transaction details, Facebook encrypts payments and user information. It also requires you to confirm your identity at times, either with personal information or PINs.
Like other similar services, Facebook’s payment system is susceptible to scams. Avoid clicking on links in messages from people you do not know or pay people you have not met in person.
Tips to keep your finances safe on Facebook
If you decide to eventually use Facebook for managing your money, consider the following tips.
- Password. A password helps to keep your financial information secure. After your first successful transaction, you’ll see a prompt asking if you’d like to use your password for future transactions. You should definitely do this to stay on the safe side, and of course, always keep your password secure and secret.
- Scammers and hackers. Don’t let this new functionality make the work of scammers and hackers any easier. Alarm bells should instantly sound if a friend or friend-of-friend requests money out of the blue, without prior discussion. That person’s Messenger account could have been hacked, so make sure you’re communicating with the right person by calling or video-chatting with them before you make a payment.
- Personal details. Remember to never share your personal details with people you don’t know. When you want to exchange personal information with a trusted friend, it would be smart to send it using a different app or platform so that your information can’t be easily compromised by any single app or website.
Ultimately, Facebook Pay could make life simpler when it comes to things like splitting the dinner bill or repaying a friend for a movie ticket. It’s quick and easy and, best of all, free.
- Safety backed by Facebook. The social networking giant encrypts every message sent through its messaging service and uses a second layer of encryption for money transfers. If you have a newer iPhone or iPad, you can use your fingerprint to complete your transaction.
- Easy payments through a familiar system. If you already use Facebook Messenger, sending money is a natural extension of something you already do.
- Limited to debit cards. Facebook doesn’t allow payment by credit card or integration with PayPal.
- Up to five days for receipt. Although money is transferred right away, you may have to wait a few days for your bank to approve the transaction.
- Businesses can’t use it. Facebook supports personal transactions between family and friends only.
- Only available in select countries. As of this writing, you can only send or receive payments through Facebook if you live in the United States, the United Kingdom or France.